40 days after the ‘mottai’, hair is growing thick and fast. These days, he could be heard proclaiming “mottai mandaila mutti (mudi)” (hair on the shaven head). 🙂
After returning from India, Anirud’s chatter has increased manifold. He constantly comments, questions, announce something or other. His incessant chatter drives us nuts and quite literally so when he does that while driving the car. There was a time when we were eagerly waiting for him to utter a word or two. Now we wish he could keep quiet at least for few minutes.
Cow Farm – On the day we arrived at our home in Chennai, there were quite a few cows sitting on our street. Immediately, Anirud declared the place as ‘cow farm’ and continues to refer it that way.
Crackers – It was the first Deepavali in India for Anirud. Though there weren’t that many crackers in the neighbourhood as was the case few years ago, whatever noise that came out was a bit too much for him. At first, he was shocked at the sound but later on he got along with that and even showed interest in handling the sparklers. Whenever a cracker went off on the street, he referred to that as ‘vedi saththam’.
Motorbike – For the first time ever, Anirud travelled in a motor bike. He was seated on the tank while driving, but the trouble is he was getting bored that he started turning sideways. So, we gave him the job of honking whenever we needed to and he did that job to perfection. However, as an extra service he switched on the lights and indicators very often.
Appa College – For days before our trip to India, we have been telling Anirud that we would be visiting the college where his dad studied and we did. It was for a college re-union and as it happened to be a holiday, he was happily running around the place saying ‘appa college’. Being a kid, quite naturally he was the toast of the gathering and some guys were using him to pull each other’s legs. Some of his dad’s mates made Anirud call a guy named ‘swamy’ as ‘poli swamy’.
Thaathaa – Both of Anirud’s thaathaas (grandpas) turned out to be his world during our three week stay in India, for they were the ones who tried every bit to bring the world towards him. Both of them walked, ate, slept and breathed with Anirud that no wonder he chose to ignore everyone else. If Anirud is asked to name someone he misses from India, he would name both his thaathaas without a moment of hesitation.
Trains – Anirud had his heart’s fill with trains. Apart from travelling in super fast Pallavan Express to Trichy, his grandpa ensured that he was taken in local trains as well, just for the sake of travelling. He was taken upto Mambalam Railway station, made to wait for an hour or so seeing all the trains that went past and got into one and travelled back home. Weeks after we returned back to UK, all of a sudden he was saying that he wants to visit ‘Tambaram Railway Station’. 🙂
Cuckoo Clock – A non-functional Cuckoo clock in our home at Chennai turned out to be one of Anirud’s favourite toys. His grandpa would make the cuckoo come out of its nest by pressing a button and that seemed to fascinate Anirud. He would have called out the cuckoo not less than 300 times during our stay.
Elephant – For the first time in his life, Anirud saw an elephant. He was really awed by its sheer size and majesty. He was taken to the Rockfort temple at Trichy and shown the elephant there. The animal touched Anirud’s head with its tusk and he was quite thrilled at that. Back home, he is using his hand to touch everyone’s head to explain the above and proudly says that he went to ‘mallaikottai’ (Rockfort) to see the elephant. While saying the word ‘mallaikottai’, he would say it in such a way that the words would crumble along.
Silver Colour Gun Shop – I think Anirud loves specialisation. According to him, each item in the world will have an exclusive shop for itself. Like he would go to ‘kadalamuttai shop‘ (peanut candy shop) to buy ‘kadalamuttai‘, a day before Diwali he went to ‘silver colour gun shop’ to buy a ‘Silver colour gun’.
Anirud is now a ‘mottai boss’, having got his head tonsured at our family deity’s temple near Sirkazhi. While we expected him to make a big scene while getting his hair shaved off, he didn’t even make a whimper. He was happily juggling with a mobile phone and was talking to the barber who went about doing the job with utmost ease. From that day on, he proudly shows off his head as ‘mottai mandai’ and sometimes he wants us to call him ‘mottai boss’.